Operatives of the Department of the State Services (DSS), alongside the Nigerian Army and Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), yesterday stopped a rally of the Yoruba Summit Group scheduled to hold at Agodi, Ibadan, Oyo State.
The peaceful rally, organised by Yoruba Koya Leadership and Training Foundation, tagged “June 12 O’to ge, was expected to take place in all South-West states and Kwara and Kogi.
Three activists working under a Yoruba socio-cultural group, Oodua Coalition Against Insurgency and Kidnapping in Yorubaland, were arrested and detained by men of the DSS after dispersing the June 12 rally.
The group, which converged to discuss insecurity in the South-West, was dispersed by security agents who in about five buses and clad in black uniforms arrived around 7:00 a.m. and cordoned off the area.
The three activists, including a sound system operator contracted to provide services at the event, were whisked away to the DSS office at its Alesinloye headquarters.
A public affairs analyst and state co-ordinator of the group and another lady activist, simply identified as Princess Oyeronke, were among those arrested.
The National Public Relations Officer of the Oodua Peoples Congress (New Era), Adesina Akinpelu, while confirming the arrest, decried the development, saying: “We got all the necessary approval but we were surprised to see men of the DSS arriving much earlier even before the coalition members, with the intent to stop the rally.”
Also, President of the Federation of Human Rights Movement, Oyo State Chapter, Laoye Sanda, who described the siege on the peaceful demonstration as counterfeit to the declaration of June 12 as Democracy Day, said the group would seek redress in court.
Meanwhile, Governor Seyi Makinde of Oyo State has granted amnesty to 35 convicted prisoners in commemoration of this year’s June 12 Democracy Day.
A statement by Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, Mr. Taiwo Adisa, said the governor took the decision pursuant to Section 212 of the 1999 Constitution as amended.
The statement, which further stated that Makinde had approved a low-key June 12 celebration, said that in subsequent years, the state would collaborate with the family of the hero of June 12, Chief Moshood Kashimawo Olawale Abiola, to celebrate the day in grand style.